June: John goes to Guatemala with St. John’s Church
July: After Lynnell’s mom’s memorial service in Minneapolis, John goes to Omaha, Nebraska to visit the Tri-Faith Initiative (three congregations bought a golf course and began building a synagogue, mosque, and (soon) church with a common green space. The three religions extensively cooperate. Wish we had such a place in Minnesota!
August: We head to London to meet up with our sons and John’s sister for a family wedding in London. Then we collect our camper van from Slidepods in Devon and begin our travels to Wales, Ireland, Scotland, and England.
September: More travel in the British Isles. Highlights: hiking Druid sites in the Celtic strongholds of Ireland and Wales, Hadrian’s Wall, Lindisfarne, seeing the art of Andy Goldsworthy in Edinburgh, Iona, and watching Carter run the Loch Ness Marathon.
October: Home to DC for a wedding, then John goes to Iceland and then to Paris with our French “daughter” and her family in Versailles, then on to Taizé. Lynnell goes home for ten days and then meets John in Lyon to revisit some of our honeymoon places: Nice, Menton, St. Paul De Vence, the gorge of the Verdon, Avignon, Carcasonne…
November: Spain and Portugal, especially the cities, palaces, libraries, and museums of the Convivencia (the time when Muslims, Christians, and Jews lived in peace under Moorish rule) and some sites associated with Ignatius of Loyola, the first Jesuit.
December: More in southern Spain, where we’ll stay in the olive groves with John’s cousin. Then off to the Canary Islands with longtime German friends. We finish the year in Morocco with family there for Christmas!
January – March: More Morocco on our own after the kids go back home. We will leave our van near Barcelona. Then we fly to India: Buddhist pilgrimage sites, Hindu holy places, and two notable places where (like river tributaries) religions have merged: Amritsar (Sikhism is a blend of Hindu and Muslim traditions) and Kerala (a wonderful meeting point for Christians, Hindus, Jews, and Parsis). Then Jordan and/or Egypt with friends.
March: Israel. We will be taking a course together on Muslims and Christian perspectives on the Holy Lands at St. George’s College in Jerusalem. Then on to the West Bank for a visit with some inspiring young folks.
April: Back to our van for more camping around Europe. Plans are vague, but we’re thinking Italy, then Croatia, Macedonia, Greece, maybe Turkey, Bulgaria….
Late May: family wedding in Utah.
Late July: family wedding in London. We plan to stash the camper van in Utrecht, Netherlands.